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CNN anchor Don Lemon created on-air tension on Thursday when he bizarrely suggested Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley wasn't "in her prime".
He made these remarks while discussing Haley's call for mental competency tests for older politicians, prompting Lemon's co-anchors to ask whether he meant childbearing or prime for being president, prompting him to clarify that he didn't agree with what he had said.
Thursday morning CNN anchor Don Lemon found himself in a difficult spot after making an unfunny statement about Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley not being "in her prime," sparking outrage and prompting swift criticism. This insensitive statement about Haley, 51, seemed out of place for such an influential morning-show host; eventually Lemon apologized for his 'inartful' and 'irrelevant' references to women's age.
On Tuesday morning, Haley expressed her desire for politicians over 75 to undergo mandatory mental competency tests - an idea which caused some on-air controversy among her colleagues. But Lemon pushed back against this notion, noting that while President Joe Biden and other Republican candidates are older than Haley, she should not draw attention to their ages since she's already past her "prime."
Poppy Harlow asked Lemon what it meant for a woman to be "in her prime," and Lemon repeated his point, citing research which indicated women's reproductive years are when they are most fertile. Additionally, he referenced an 2011 article which noted presidents typically reach 55 when they take office.
On Twitter, some users criticized the anchor's comments as misogynistic and chauvinist. Others likened them to Lemon's sexist remarks last month when he asked a Republican panelist if she suffered from'mommy brain' after losing her train of thought.
Despite the outrage, Lemon stood by his statement later on Twitter. He explained that his remarks were intended to illustrate when women reach their sexual prime.
He noted that there was no definitive scientific definition of a woman's "prime," and it could be that men don't experience the same physiological changes as women do.
The on-air argument has drawn widespread attention both inside and outside CNN, with younger staffers taking offense and some wondering how the cable-news network can book prominent female politicians or newsmakers after one of its best known anchors appeared to disparage older women.
It's not the first time Lemon has made a mistake on air, and it could be his worst. According to The New York Post, in December he allegedly shouted at White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins for interrupting him during the show. Since the launch of "CNN This Morning," which has had an uneventful start in ratings so far, CNN leaders have yet to intervene.
On Thursday morning, CNN anchor Don Lemon caused a furor of on-air tension when he questioned GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley's proposal that elderly politicians undergo mental competency tests. He quipped that Haley "isn't in her prime," an odd statement which caught Haley's attention and drew harsh criticism both from viewers and online commenters alike.
Though some might argue that women have an "expiration date" when they should no longer participate in politics, Lemon's view was both misinformed and sexist. There is no definitive answer as to when a woman reaches her prime; rather, this concept exists only as an abstract concept which Google can easily provide details when searched for.
Women of a certain age are considered "in their prime," based on factors like sexual peak, fertility, beauty and life satisfaction rather than age alone. So while it's true that those in their 20s, 30s and 40s are in their primes, now could also be an ideal time for them to have a baby or take over the White House!
He then listed off several prominent female politicians, including Clinton at 61 years old. And he said "If you search on Google or whatever, she's in her prime now" - an act of sexism that was evident throughout the conversation.
Harlow then asked Lemon if he was talking about a woman's potential for childbearing or becoming president, to which Lemon replied that no.
Harlow then asked Lemon to clarify his statement, which he did with a usual deadpan expression and lots of back and forth. Eventually, Lemon backed down and apologized for his remarks but continued using sexist terminology.
He then attempted to defend himself on the show, but when podcaster Audie Cornish joined and challenged him, Lemon's position did not change. This isn't the first time Lemon has made women on his show uncomfortable with comments he's made; yet again it demonstrates an overreaction.
Unfortunately, CNN has had trouble maintaining its show's chemistry since its creation last year as they sought to introduce a new morning option after New Day began experiencing ratings declines. Finding an effective formula takes time, and recent tense moments between Lemon and his co-hosts - particularly Collins who has had issues with him before - won't do much to boost their chances of success.
CNN anchor Don Lemon is struggling to maintain his ratings at CNN's new morning show. Lemon, who has caused much friction with his co-hosts recently, has come under fire for a number of controversial remarks.
On Thursday, Lemon made an unusual statement about when women should reach their prime. He made this comment during a segment about GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley's proposal to require mental competency tests for politicians who are older than 75 years.
Though Lemon meant well, his statement was far too blunt and sexist for its own good. He said that women are considered in their "prime" years between 20s and 30s - or maybe even 40s.
He was obviously trying to make a statement about the gender imbalance in politics, but his comment proved so offensive that it drew immediate backlash on social media. Conservative commentators attacked him for his sexist remarks, demanding that he stop triggering women and be fired.
Soon after his remarks, Lemon was forced to issue an apology for his words which were considered inartful, offensive and misogynistic.
Lemon has not been the first time his comments about women have drawn widespread criticism. He's been accused of misogyny on multiple occasions, and recently asked a female co-host if she was suffering from'mommy brain' after she stumbled over her words during an interview.
He quickly apologized for his remarks, yet didn't really change his mind about being wrong and should not have spoken out against Haley. Rather, he clarified that his remarks weren't about when women should begin childbearing years but rather when they should reach their political prime.
The issue here is that he took an ill-defined and subjective concept of when women reach sexual and reproductive prime, then applied it to politics. That's both lazy and sexist.
It drew considerable criticism from outside of the conservative world, particularly because it targeted one woman specifically. Those who disagreed with Lemon's remarks noted that Haley Haley should not have been elected president simply due to her age; they further pointed out that many prominent women in politics have achieved their political peak much younger than Lemon did - Hillary Clinton running for president at 61!
Social media is a web-based system that enables users to exchange information, opinions and experiences with others. It can be utilized by individuals for keeping in touch with friends and family; businesses to engage with customers and market products or services. As one of the most popular communication methods between people from different locations around the globe, it serves as evidence of technological convergence.
Social networks are websites that enable people to connect with one another online via internet-connected devices like computers, smartphones, and tablets. Here users can exchange text, images, videos, audio files and other digital content as well as share their locations and other personal details about themselves.
Politics has increasingly relied on social media platforms as a powerful tool for spreading ideas and shaping opinions. This is because these networks typically boast high rates of virality, or virality rates--meaning content posted there can spread rapidly through an extensive number of users.
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social networking sites are among the most widely used forms of digital communication with over four billion active users worldwide. These platforms offer mass communication that enables people to engage with each other in real time.
Social media users' accounts can be accessed using either an email address or phone number. With these credentials, users are able to create profiles, upload photos, and follow other users.
Some social media platforms, such as Twitter, are primarily used for sharing news or breaking stories. Other sites like YouTube allow users to upload videos.
It has also been demonstrated that content posted on social media can reach an even wider audience by being reshared on other websites. This helps make news stories more widely known.
In some instances, this can be seen as a positive thing; however, it also has potential negative repercussions for those wrongfully targeted by content. For instance, anti-vaccination campaigns on social media may target vulnerable children with an inaccurate and inflamatory message.
Nikki Haley's comments on CNN This Morning, however, led to an error by Lemon which left his female co-host Kaitlan Collins visibly upset and taking a well-timed bathroom break. This incident is just one of several awkward moments since Lemon joined CNN's morning show in November, reports The Daily Beast; it has also raised concerns about its chemistry and led some staffers to complain internally about Lemon's actions.